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response to David Goodman on Elsevier agreement

I would like to give a response to David Goodman on the agreement 
the Dutch universities made with Elsevier Science.

Dear David,

I can understand that (looking at this development from a distance)  you
can have this "Dutch" perception of the agreement between Dutch
universities and Elsevier Science, but you're wrong.  In the US, many
consortia came to agreements with Elsevier in the past, but in the
Netherlands we didn't. Not because we didn't negotiate with them but
because we couldn't reach an agreement on "a consortium level". Only
bilateral agreements were made with Elsevier, the first was negotiated in
1993 at Tilburg University.

In the Autumn of 1999, the Consortium of Dutch universities started new
discussions with all major scientific publishers, irrespective their
country of origin. The focus of these meetings was primarily the important
change in their and in our business. From the press release and the
addendum, you can learn that these issues are key in the agreement.  In
conjunction with this, we managed to make a license agreement that is
significantly better than deals I've seen before. We are convinced that
this agreement is both in the interest of the publisher and in the
interest of universities/libraries.

I would like to stress that it is our firm intention to continue our
negotiations with other publishers and we are confident that other
agreements will be possible.

best regards 

Hans Geleijnse
University Librarian
Tilburg University
The Netherlands
Tel. +13.4662146
Fax  +13.4663370